Textile consumption » Changing uses of fabric in apparel
Great changes have occurred in the fabrics used for clothing, with heavy woollen and worsted suitings being replaced by lighter materials, often made from blends of natural and man-made fibres, possibly owing to improved indoor heating. Warp-knitted fabrics made from bulked yarns are replacing woven fabrics, and there is a trend away from formality in both day and evening dress to more casual wear, for which knitted garments are especially appropriate. The use of synthetic fibre fabrics has established the easy-care concept and made formerly fragile light and diaphanous fabrics more durable. The introduction of elastomeric fibres has revolutionized the foundation-garment trade, and the use ofstretch yarns of all types has produced outerwear that is close-fitting but comfortable.
Manufacturers of tailored garments formerly used interlinings made of horsehair, which was later replaced by goat hair and then by resin-treatedviscose rayon. Today fusible interlinings and various washable synthetics are widely used. The performance of a garment is greatly influenced by such factors as the interlining used and the sewing threads employed.
The care required by a textile fabric depends upon both fibre content and the application of various finishing processes. In 1972 the United States Federal Trade Commission passed regulations requiring fabric manufacturers to provide the consumer with care labels to be sewn into homemade garments, and requiring ready-to-wear manufacturers to sew permanent care information labels into clothing (see also clothing and footwear industry).